West Virginia Enacts $200 Annual Fee for Electric Vehicles

credit: Office of Gov. Jim Justice

West Virginia Governor Jim Justice signed a road funding bill on Thursday that includes new fees on electric and hybrid vehicles. SB1006, which passed the legislature last week, will impose additional annual registration fees of $200 on all-electric vehicles and $100 on hybrids. The new law goes into effect on July 1, 2017.

A total of 111 all-electric and 328 plug-in hybrid vehicles have been sold in West Virginia since 2011 according to data from the Auto Alliance. Continue reading

Tesla Model S is Five Years Old

First Customer Deliveries Began on June 22, 2012

Five years ago today, Tesla delivered the first batch of Model S cars to about a dozen customers. The event was held at the Tesla Factory in Fremont, California and was streamed live. At the time, there were about 2,300 Tesla Roadsters on the road. Five years later, Tesla has sold over 100,000 Model S sedans and over 25,000 Model X SUVs. The first deliveries of Tesla’s Model 3 are scheduled to begin next month.

Here are some photos of the reception and viewing party held at the Washington, DC Tesla Store on K Street on the evening of those first Model S deliveries.

@Lanny

Pennsylvania Turnpike EV Charging Project Cancelled

Plans to install electric vehicle charging stations at every travel plaza along the Pennsylvania Turnpike have been cancelled according to the Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection (DEP).

In December, 2011, the DEP awarded a $1 million Alternative Fuel Incentive Grant to Car Charging Group, Inc. of Miami Beach, FL to help promote the market for electric vehicles. The Pennsylvania Turnpike Commission was to supply $500,000 of infrastructure support funds to help with the cost of transformers, electric lines, and meters. Car Charging Group pledged to match the $1 million grant to install electric vehicle charging equipment and services on the Turnpike.

Since 2014, Car Charging Group, which operates the Blink Network, has installed one CHAdeMO Fast Charger and one Level 2 charging station at five of the 17 service plazas along the Turnpike.

Click map for location details. orange=Fast Chargers & Level 2, grey=no charging station.

Earlier this year, Car Charging Group submitted a plan to complete the installation of charging stations at the remaining 12 service plazas starting April 3, 2017. The company stated their intention to complete the work by June 30, 2017 in accordance with the conditions of their contract. However, it became apparent that they were not going to be able to fulfill their obligations so Pennsylvania terminated the project with them. The unused grant funds have been liquidated into the Alternative Fuels Incentive Fund. Pennsylvania officials are now considering their options for supporting EV infrastructure along the Turnpike. There are no immediate plans in the works.

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Anti-ICEing Ordinance Proposed in Jersey City, NJ


Public Hearing Scheduled for June 28, 2017

The Jersey City, New Jersey City Council has proposed an ordinance that would make it unlawful to block a specifically designated EV parking space or charging station with a non-electric vehicle or to occupy a charging space with an EV unless it is actively charging.

The proposed City Ordinance 17-075 [PDF link] was introduced at the June 14, 2017 Council Meeting and it also defines certain terms related to electric vehicle charging for purposes of the Code and it requires specific information to be placed on the signs at EV parking/charging spaces in order to be enforceable.

City Ordinance 17-075, portions excerpted below, would authorize towing as well as a fine for violations occurring on a street, alley or City parking facility. Continue reading

Franklin & Marshall College in Lancaster, PA

Franklin & Marshall College in Lancaster, PA now has four EV charging ports in the parking lot at College Square. The two dual-port Schneider Electric charging stations were installed in April by MTV Solar of Berkley Springs, WV.

The EV charging stations are close to restaurants and other activity centers and are open to the public and are free to use.

Tesla Plans Charging Solution for Apartment Dwellers


Today at Tesla’s annual shareholder’s meeting, CEO Elon Musk was asked via Twitter if there were any plans to make it easier for people living in apartments to own and charge a Tesla. Musk responded by saying that the company will be establishing more Supercharging locations within cities for Teslas to charge even if owners do not have access to a traditional home charging station.

Musk explained that these city Supercharging locations will be lower-powered than a regular Supercharger which is optimized for long-distance trips but would have more power than a typical charging connector found in a single family home garage. He said the system will be designed to load-balance the power so that all the cars will not be drawing maximum current at the same time.

Musk said that Tesla needs to solve the problem of charging for people who live in apartments and not just standard homes. “Wherever the car is being parked, at an apartment or work or somewhere in between, we’re going to make sure that there is a place to charge your car even if you live in an apartment.”

Tesla Supercharger in Breezewood, PA

Construction has begun on a Tesla Supercharging Station at the Sheetz at the Breezewood Interchange of I-76 and I-70 in Pennsylvania. There appears to be eight stalls going in there.
This will be a welcome addition to relieve some of the congestion at the six-stall Somerset Supercharger which was almost full when I used it on Memorial Day afternoon.

The Breezewood Supercharger is also well-placed for Tesla drivers wishing to travel the more scenic and leisurely Rt. 30 and the Old Lincoln Highway.

Wireless Inductive Bus Charger in Howard County, Maryland

Howard County will be adding electric bus service to their Green Line route. It will use inductive charging while stopped to load passengers.

The inductive high-speed charging equipment is already in place at the bus stop on the east side of the Mall in Columbia. The 50 kW Momentum Wireless Power fast chargers are made by Momentum Dynamics of Malvern, Pennsylvania.

Induction charging pad at bus stop.

Maryland EV Tax Credit Extended Three Years

photo: Executive Office of the Governor

The Maryland Clean Cars Act of 2017 (SB 393/HB 406) was signed into law by Governor Larry Hogan on May 4, 2017. This will extend the Electric Vehicle Tax Credit program through fiscal year 2020.

The Electric Vehicle Tax Credit yearly funding will increase by over 30 percent. The EV Tax Credit will now be $100 per kWh of vehicle battery capacity, (was $125) and the maximum tax credit per vehicle will remain $3,000. Vehicles with a sales price over $60,000 will not qualify for the tax credit. The new legislation also modifies the EV Charging Station rebate. The rebate for installed residential equipment will be 40 percent of the cost, with a $700 maximum, and the commercial rebate will be 40 percent of the installed cost with a $4,000 maximum rebate.

The EV Tax Credit will only apply for vehicles purchased on or after July 1, 2017 and is subject to funds availability.

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Maryland Governor to Sign Bill Extending EV Tax Incentives


Governor Larry Hogan will sign the Clean Cars Act of 2017 that will extend the Maryland tax credit on purchases of electric vehicles and tax rebates for installing EV charging equipment.

The Clean Cars Act of 2017 is one of around 20 environmental bills that the Governor will be signing into law on May 4, 2017. A signing ceremony will be held at the Annapolis City Dock at 2:00 PM. The Governor will be joined by Senate President Thomas V. “Mike” Miller and House Speaker Michael E. Busch.

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